Saturday, June 9, 2007

Brothers - 10 fascinating(ish) facts

1) The titular brothers are Phil and Tom Burgess, two super-powered Brits. Phil is Firework, a boozy bad boy who can shoot blasts of searing hot flame from his fingertips and fly. Tom is Empire State Human, a straight-arrow nice guy who can grow to 6o feet in height. They enjoy a love/hate relationship that constantly and inconveniently impacts on all those around them.

2) I was prompted to write the book after noticing how few sets of brothers there were featured in mainstream superhero comics. Brother/sister relationships we have in abundance (Wanda and Pietro Maximoff, Johnny and Sue Storm, Northstar and Aurora) but, apart from Scott and Alex Summers (aka Cyclops and Havok), I've been struggling to think of any other pairs of male siblings running about in the DC or Marvel universe.

3) Tom and Phil are members of a superhero team. They were originally called Crime Crushers (too naff), then The League Of London (too unoriginal), before I settled on The Great Britons. The name was "inspired" by a phenomenally shit awards show I saw recently on ITV1. There was a poll in which people could phone in and vote for their "Greatest Briton". The eventual top three were 3) Margaret Thatcher; 2) Robbie Williams; 1) The Queen. Astonishingly for a staunch Republican, the ghastly German woman is the person on that list I'd least like to punch in the face.

4) The other members of The Great Britons are Lady Lovebomb, Decapitator, Futurehead and Gentleman Jim Bones.

5) Brothers is set in London. When I was a kid and comics were as important to me as oxygen, Spider-Man 's New York seemed like the most amazing, exotic place on Earth, with its amazing skyscrapers and super-powered punch-ups. One of my aims with Brothers is to make London seem similarly amazing and exotic – that's why the Canary Wharf development (ooh, skyscrapers) and the Sir Norman Foster Building (aka "The Gherkin") are both featured prominently in the story.

6) The main villain in the book is a rampaging man-beast called Bloodbath. He's a horrifying monster capable of enormous acts of violence but also the victim of "shadowy powers".

7) The script contains a sneaky reference to Blackadder The Third. I bet no one picks up on it.

8) There's a high body count – and a couple of the deaths are truly bloody horrible.

9) Part of the story's premise is that there are only seven super-powered individuals in the UK – the six members of the Great Britons and Bloodbath. This "supes shortage" plays an integral role as the story unfolds.

10) Artist Will Sliney and I have decided to bring out the book as a two-part US format mini-series rather than the previously-mentioned prestige one-shot. It'll be Moonface Press' very first mini, with each part probably running to 28 pages.

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